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Whole Foods Market has opened its new distribution center in Vernon, Calif.
The 128,000-square-foot distribution center has nearly 100 full-time team members and serves the company’s 56 stores in Arizona, Hawaii, Southern California and southern Nevada.
“This facility ships and receives 1.2 million cases of product per month, including perishable items like meat, poultry, cheese, produce, floral, bulk, seafood and bakery, and it has the largest recycling center in the company,” said Bryan Bergez, facility team leader.
Building innovations include solar panels on the roof that heat water, a building for the recycling and compost sorting collected from all 56 stores, and break room furniture made of recycled materials, including chairs made of 111 recycled coke bottles each, and picnic tables made of recycled plastic.
- Earthquake-resistant racking in the warehouse with base isolators that help prevent the racks and product from toppling, and offer additional protection to team members
- State-of-the-art docks and 26 bay dock doors developed with straight lines from dock doors to warehouses for efficient loading and unloading
- Ammonia refrigeration as an energy efficient alternative to Freon
- A warehouse with temperature-controlled rooms for each product type, and energy efficient motion sensor LED lights
- A quality control team that works closely with the USDA to inspect all produce and floral before it goes to stores
Whole Foods celebrated the opening by hosting a traditional bread-breaking ceremony with team members, company leaders and city officials, including Vernon Mayor Michael McCormick, who presented the facility with a proclamation to commemorate the opening.